GFRIEND - the discography rate ☾ #31



But like the rain that stopped
You had disappeared.


Buddies: 9.5x1 (@aux) 9.25x1 (@Wills) 9x6(@boombazookajoe, @Slice of Life, @Crisp X, @Serg., @Music Is Death, @Remorque)
Antis: 7x3 (@soratami, @eliminathan, @thommyh) 7.5x3 (@M24, @Cotton Park, @Vixen), 7.75x1 (@BEST FICTION)
@junglefish: 8.75
@savilizabeths: 8
5 voters: 53
10 voters: 53
15 voters: 46
20 voters: 52
26 voters: 57

Two songs share the 57th spot and I've decided for no particular reason that Red Umbrella would be the first to fall! No 10s here but six 9s and not one score lower than 7! Pretty impressive for a bside from an era most people ignored because they didn't like the single.

Composed by Heuktae, who's worked with the group before and also collaborated with Lovelyz and Apink, Red Umbrella is inspired by Shibuya-kei, a genre of music that mixes jazz, electro and soul and had its glory days in the 90s in Japan before knowing a kind of resurgence in Korea, thanks in part to the amazing Clazziquai, comparable to the resurgence of City pop only on a smaller scale. But anyway, we're here to talk about Red Umbrella, not Shibuya-kei which is too bad because I don't really have anything to say about it!

Don't get me wrong, it's catchy, well produced and all in all a great track, it's just never been one of my favorites from GFRIEND or even from Parallel. It's the kind of song I love when I listen to the album in its entirety but I wouldn't seek out by itself. Still, like I said, the production is very good here and you can hear those shibuya-kei influences, but what I get even more from it is some kind of... disco-for-beginners vibe which I love. The lyrics are very sweet, talking about sharing an umbrella with someone during a rain shower and growing closer to that person in that short moment. Kinda bittersweet too actually, as that person leaves once the rain stops, but hey! Just keep your eyes on the weather forecast and you might meet them again, who knows?

@eatyourself (8.75) : I looooooooove the production but I want another chorus!!

@M24 (7.5) : I really like this, I just wish the instrumental were a little more playful like in the intro. I didn't realize the lyrics were so sad, because the song is quite upbeat.

@Attis (8.5) :
Love the little bossa nova influence

@Wills (9.25) : The chorus melody on this is so lovely: soothing but never sleepy

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My my my my
My feelings as deep as the sky above us.


Buddies: 10x2 (@eliminathan, @Music Is Death) 9.5x3 (@junglefish, @aux, @BEST FICTION) 9.25x1(@thommyh)
Antis: 6x1 (@codecat) 6.5x3 (@Attis, @boombazookajoe, @Wills), 6.75x1 (@eatyourself)
@junglefish: 9.5
@savilizabeths: 8.75
5 voters: 82
10 voters: 81
15 voters: 73
20 voters: 64
26 voters: 57

Oof. Okay buddies, looking at the low scorers list, I'm thinking maybe I need to reevaluate my friendships!!! What the hell is wrong with you gays? My My My! is not good, it's GREAT. The intro serving hold music with added guitars, the short bridge shared by Umji and Yuju, the slightly more energetic last chorus... I love it all! Maybe the song suffered from being a track from their Japanese album and thus less known than most of the other songs in the rate? I'm not sure! All I know is that it deserved better.

Written by Jang Jeong-woo, who also worked on La Pam Pam and JOE, who was part of the team behind the magnificient Memoria, My My My is a song about yearning for someone and it sounds like it in the best way. It's neither sappy nor too dramatic and it isn't what I would call a sad song either, instead it sounds... hopeful? The lyrics play on that, with lines such as 'is this what true love feels like? I'll keep shouting it out until it reaches you' or 'I can't hide it anymore, everything within my heart, to you I'll reveal it all now.' I just hope the poor girl doesn't get rejected after pouring her heart out because that would be embarazzing!

Anyway, I clearly don't agree with this result but the public has spoken!

@M24 (8.25) : BOP! Their best japanese song? Yes, I think so, don't @ me! That chorus is catchy as hell, and the electronic instrumental is very much appreciated.

@Attis (6.5) : Ugh I'm not a fan of this hook either, additional point for another exceptional note from miss Yuju

@Wills (6.5) : Nice that it’s sonically adventurous, but mostly makes me appreciate how good their production quality usually is fff


The moments when we cried and laughed together
They will be a pretty memory.


Buddies: 10x2 (@eatyourself, @RUNAWAY) 9.75x1 (@KimLippington) 9.5x3(@Slice of Life, @aux, @Music Is Death)
Antis: 6.5x2 (@M24, @boombazookajoe) 6.75x1 (@Cotton Park), 7x1 (@soratami)
@junglefish: 8.5
@savilizabeths: 7.5
5 voters: 42
10 voters: 50
15 voters: 48
20 voters: 46
26 voters: 56

With this elimination, 'Fever Season' loses its first song! And look at the hosts scoring below the average ff...

Composed by Lee Won-jong and written by all six GFRIEND members, Hope is an upbeat pop song that clearly draws inspiration from the early and mid 2000s. I love the production here and the r'n'b influences sprinkled throughout the song are most welcome. GFRIEND and nostalgia kinda go hand in hand so it's not surprising that this track evokes those kind of feelings and here it's done very well. It doesn't sound dated but from the very first notes, you understand what Lee Won-jong wanted to convey through Hope.

The lyrics here are really beautiful and a perfect companion to the girls' peppy delivery and how positive and upbeat the whole thing sounds. Of course, it's once again about love (though you could argue it's about friendship I guess), but this time there's a little something about them that makes them more remarkable to me. Or maybe I just woke up on the good side of the bed today and I'm seeing things through rose colored glasses. Still, I think this verse in particular is very pretty:

The moments when we cried and laughed together
They will be a pretty memory
We gave each other a gift that glowed brightly
And our hearts became one

Okay. Reading it again it is pretty much your typical Kpop love song fare. Just nod and smile and let's move on to you guys' commentary:

@eatyourself (10) : A great soundtrack for walking on the seaside anywhere in Côte d'Azur.

@M24 (6.5) : It's serviceable. I can understand why it's special to so many Buddies because it's the one song all the members co-wrote… I just don't really like it sound-wise. It's very one-dimensional.

Next, ONE album loses TWO songs and I need YOU to guess what those songs are!!!
You guys really struggle with answering questions!!!

Let's move on...


I met you after wandering for a long time,
This is definitely love, really.


Buddies: 9.5x2 (@Slice of Life, @Music Is Death) 9.25x3 (@RUNAWAY, @eliminathan, @Vixen) 9x2(@eatyourself, @Remorque)
Antis: 5x1 (@Serg.) 7x1 (@thommyh), 7.5x2 (@aux, @Cotton Park)
@junglefish: 8.75
@savilizabeths: 8.75
5 voters: 49
10 voters: 47
15 voters: 53
20 voters: 54
26 voters: 55

You ever wondered why GFRIEND doesn't do rap sections in their songs? Let me introduce you to L.U.V!

With lyrics by Lee Seu-ran (whose credit list is just too damn long to choose highlights from) and arranged by Sean Alexander and Darren Smith, L.U.V is, according to its official description, a 'synthpop song with a somewhat @vague atmosphere' and highlights the 'girly voices of GFRIEND'. I mean, no argument here but I'm surprised they didn't mention pretty rapstar Sowon's genre-defining rap.

I know I made fun of it right here in the opening of this post, but Lil Kim Sowon (real name Kim So-jeong Denise Jones) rapping is definitely the highlight of the track. Is she good at it? Not at all. She is bad and everything about her parts sounds corny and straight out of a SNL parody instead of a real song and yet... I stan. Ironically, unironically, I don't know, but I do! Because it makes what is otherwise a pretty mundane track memorable. It even had me wondering... Did Sowon take notice of Lil Uzi Vert stanning the group on Twitter and asked him for some guidance?


Outside of the rap sections, the rest of the song is very good even if it's not offering anything new. One thing I love is the kind of ping pong effect of the chorus. The first time we hear it, Eunha sings most of it with only one line sung by Yuju, the second time it's the opposite and the third time it's back to being a Eunha-fest with Yuju as a supporting role. Very nice!

This one got you girls all chatty:

@eatyourself (9) : Why does this remind me so much of TWICE? Sowon shines here.

@ysev (8) : A lovely tribute to Lil Uzi Vert, including inspiring rap parts by the Notorious So-Won.

@M24 (8) :
One of my favorites of the album… that chorus is wonderful, and the "barago baraedon" bit sounds so poetic to my ears. And a Sowon rap is always a welcome addition for me personally!

@Attis (8) : After 84 years, miss Sowon finally do her job actual position

@Slice of Life (9.5) : I forgot how much I STANNED this album OH MY GOD!!!!!! The return of rapper Yeoja Chingu let’s go!!!

@Crisp X (8.5) : Something about this always gave me Girl’s Day vibes, or 2nd gen K-Pop overall.

@Wills (8) : That post-chorus rap is a bit…

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I'm alive.

I'm so grateful to @junglefish for putting up with me and being so kind about my vanishing. I am truly sorry to everyone for just up and ghosting like that. This year has been......something certainly. Something bad. Can we put 2022 to bed yet? I'll save you from my long winded explanation of my trials and tribulations of the last few months but I want you all to know that I am still very invested in this rate, and that I intend to be back for good now. Not just in this rate but on the forum in general because I don't think I've been absent this long in quite awhile.

Expect an elimination very soon....I would react to the string of songs that left in my absence but so many of them were wrong decisions, especially goddamn Love Whisper. I say this with affection but you lot are deaf.

Oh and yeah @Slice of Life ... sorry for flaking on the monthly charts. You know life is really screwed up when I don't vote in those.


No matter what colour I paint you with
You're beyond my imagination



Buddies: 10x3 (@Serg., @savilizabeths, Music is Death) 9.5x3 (@thommyh, @Slice of Life, @RUNAWAY) 9.25x1 (@junglefish) 9x1 (@Crisp X)
Antis: 5x1 (@Monado) 6.5x1 (@Attis) 7x1 (@codecat) 7.5x1 (@boombazookajoe)
@junglefish: 9.25
@savilizabeths: 10
5 voters: 71
10 voters: 59
15 voters: 52
20 voters: 59
26 voters: 54

Oh, this feels weird. First elimination back. I can't decide if I'm happy or sad to be writing about a song I really like. Neither of the above guesses were correct. So, how are we feeling about 'Glow' being the next Time for Us track to make it's exit, hm?

'Glow' was composed by Daniel Sherman, Val Del Prete (Oh My Girl 'Colouring Book', TWICE 'Happy Happy', aespa 'ICONIC') & Caroline Gustavsson (fromis_9 'DM', Oh My Girl 'The Fifth Season', Le Sserafim 'Blue Flame') and the sole lyricist, Lee Mi-so, also wrote my favourite TWICE b-side 'WOW' so there was definitely quite the talented team behind this one. It also debuted at #128 on the Gaon Download Chart. Very nice!

To answer my earlier question, I'm not thrilled about this leaving. 'Glow' is one of my favourite songs from it's album. The song was described as an "R&B genre song with a sweet and warm atmosphere that harmonizes well with rich vocals and harmony, pop synths and drum grooves." I definitely feel the sweet and warm atmosphere. This is just bright poppy goodness. Not too sugary though, it's got this chill bounce to it that I really enjoy. In the commentary below @Crisp X talks about roller skating to it and I haven't been able to get that out of my head since. It's absolutely the perfect song for that. It's getting warm here now and all I can think about is buying a pair of roller skates, going out and listening to this on my headphones. Perfect vibes!

This is quite an Eunha heavy track, which works for it, as she has that sweetness to her vocals that you want for a song like this. It's Yerin and Umji that I feel really anchor the song though. I don't know if that will make sense but they feel like the foundation here. Yerin's beginning of each verse and Umji in each pre-chorus feel like such pivotal aspects of the song. I'm going to say something and it's going to sound like an insult to the lovely Yerin, but I promise it's actually a compliment. Her voice is on the plainer side, more simple with less of a unique vocal colour compared to the other girls. She's stable and really versitile so she can blend perfectly into every song and genre thrown at her. It's a blessing really. I adore the pre-chrous melody and I think Umji sounds absolutely lovely on it! So smooth and sweet! We even get another...sort of rap from Miss Sowon and I would say it's a little more successful than the previously eliminated 'L.U.V' but far less memorable.

And yeah yeah, the lyrics are yet another cute love song. I think the lyrics are quite pretty though. "You opened a window into my dark heart and let the light in", "My heart is growing larger, my hope is growing clearer. I'm embroidering all of them like starlight. In this universe, I can't take my eyes off you", "You're a flower road, that gives me surprises every day." Lots of great little lyrical moments that I personally really like! Is it revolutionary for a GFriend song? Not lyrically, no but it's lovely none the less.

Okay, I've rambled enough. Saying a lot while saying nothing at all I'm sure. Let's hear from our commentary panel!

@eatyourself (8.75) : A more juvenile offering from them at this point, but it kind of gives me The Postal Service so I'm good!

@M24 (7.75) : How the producers created such a catchy song from that quirky loop is beyond me. Surprisingly, my favorite parts are Yerin's and Sowon's lines in the chorus, they both slapped more than Eunha and Yuju here!

@Crisp X (9) : I can’t wait to roller skate to it at a roller disco soon, it just has that vibe about it.

Don't mind me spreading my ARTBEAT agenda further by adding their video to this post. Please stream, juseyo!

Now please induldge us by making a guess (or hopeful wish) as to which song leaves next! We'd love to hear from you.​

Emotional day, the dreams I had with you
Emotional day, they are starting to fade away.


Buddies: 10x5 (@Serg., @eliminathan, @Music Is Death, @savilizabeths, @Remorque) 9.75x1 (@BEST FICTION) 9.5x1(@junglefish)
Antis: 5.75x1 (@codecat) 6.5x1 (@KimLippington), 6.75x1 (@thommyh)
@junglefish: 9.5
@savilizabeths: 10
5 voters: 84
10 voters: 77
15 voters: 61
20 voters: 71
26 voters: 53

Pleasantly surprised this song almost made the top 50! And that jump from #71 to #53!! The last six voters really came through huh!

Composed by Carlos K. (KARA, Akina Nakamori, NMB48, Miliyah Kato, Nogizaka46...) Emotional Days, the second track on GFRIEND's sole Japanese album 'Fallin' Light' is... so damn dramatic. You girls know I live from dramatic ballads and this is no exception. I go back and forth but most days I'd say this is my favorite album track from Fallin' Light. What I love the most in this track is the piano, of course. It's so pretty and delicate and gives off that J-Pop ballad feel that I adore. Which, for the record, J-Pop ballads >>> K-Pop ballads and that's not up for discussion.

Now, why didn't I give it a 10 if I love it so much? Well, I'm nitpicking but the verses are definitely not strong enough for that chorus. It might have to do with some of the girls not being fully fluent in Japanese but some parts sound so flat and more like they're reciting something instead of singing and feeling it, which is criminal for a song like Emotional Days. Thankfully, the chorus saves it. Eunha and Yuju certainly understood the assignement, sounding like they're carrying the pains and woes of the whole world on their shoulders. The drama, the pathos! Eunha's wailing in that last chorus while Yuju is busy EMOTING through her singing!!! Legendary. Does it border on pastiche? Yeah. Yeah it does and it might even actually cross that border but I don't care, it works for me and with five 10s, it seems like it worked for some of you too!

Let's move on our very short commentary section:

@M24 (7) : Eunha's vocals here, whew! The song itself doesn't make me feel emotional at all tho ddd.

@Wills (9.25) : Chorus is good, but the verses are truly something special